Wizards of the Coast Reviews | Glassdoor

Wizards of the Coast Reviews

Updated June 9, 2017
115 reviews

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3.0
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Christian Cocks
10 Ratings

115 Employee Reviews

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Pros
Cons
  • I've loved Magic since I was a child, and working in R&D was a lifelong dream (in 6 reviews)

  • They're there to take credit for your talent and exploit your love for Magic and D&D (in 4 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (2)

    "Working at WotC, a job as fun as the games you make."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Game Designer in Renton, WA
    Current Employee - Game Designer in Renton, WA
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Awesome benefits, a collaborative work atmosphere, and ridiculously cool IPs (Magic: The Gathering and Dungeons & Dragons). You get to do creative work in an environment that values it highly. And from a game designer point of view it has the single highest concentration of them I've seen at any company, creating a work environment filled with fascinating discussions, deep knowledgebases to draw upon and the best tangential blathering you can imagine.

    Cons

    The company is part of Hasbro and has some of the inertia and bureaucracy of a large company.

    Advice to Management

    Less focus on managerial buzzwords, more on getting actual product out the door. Yes process can help, but in general nimbleness wins.


  2. Helpful (1)

    "Great place to work"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Renton, WA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Renton, WA
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    Free product! 300 points (dollars) a quarter to spend in the company store (an extra handful of points during Christmas), although the company store tends to not be stocked as much as one might expect. Lots of very smart people to work around who have creative ideas to exchange. Fun and goofy work environment, as you might expect from a game company. Free parking and access to gym. Owned by Hasbro so there are some benefits via that company as well, such as the entire week of Christmas is paid holiday. Opportunity to playtest games and play lots of Magic and D&D with other like-minded people.

    Cons

    Management still seems to be grappling with how best to move into the digital era, so things are shifting heavily within the company and lots of decisions seem to either not make sense or not be followed through a couple of months later. The vast majority of employees are very smart and very nice, but can lack some social skills. Company store is not as well stocked as it should be. No place to eat within walking distance. Gym is small. Those are all very nitpicky, it really is a great place to work if you are into games.

    Advice to Management

    Get a handle on how to manage a software development company.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Meaningful work on a worthwhile product."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Game Designer in Renton, WA
    Current Employee - Game Designer in Renton, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Wizards of the Coast full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    From the time I started my internship, I was given constant opportunities to do meaningful work on a worthwhile product with an empowering amount of autonomy while being plugged into a team of challenging and educational experts in the field of game design.

    Cons

    While our energy and attention to self-reflection is high, our process for acting on that self-reflection and evolving our process could use work.


  4. Helpful (3)

    "Wizards is an awesome and fun place to work if you love games."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Wizards of the Coast full-time (More than 8 years)

    Pros

    My time at Wizards has been full of interacting with smart, interesting people who are passionate about the games we make and the audiences we serve. I could not ask for a better environment as someone who is passionate about Magic.

    Cons

    Wizards is still in the early stages of its digital growth, and it has frequent growing pains in this regard. But the fundamental vision is strong, and I'm optimistic about the improvements taking place now and in the future.


  5. Helpful (12)

    "Best of Both Worlds"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Renton, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Renton, WA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at Wizards of the Coast full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Wizards is great for young go getters. They come in, get to work on cool technology that’s mostly less than 10 years old, build up some nice resume bullet points. Then they leave since pay is better everywhere else in this area.

    But what about the rest of us? The real people. I’ve been here a few years now. I checked out years ago. How’s Wizards for the majority of us?

    It’s FANTASTIC. My manager checked out years ago too. Beyond that? No one cares!

    You never meet your skip level manager. Never. You never meet your director, or VP, or anyone above your direct, every day manager. And there’s about 10 layers between me and the local CEO. I’m closer to Kevin Bacon than him!

    What about the skip level manager - worried that he’ll catch my manager being checked out? There’s no worries there. Just recently had a group meeting with him. He has four reports, and manages four products. He messed up the name of one of his direct reports and one of his products! And when called on it he responded “Everyone calls him [incorrect pronunciation]”!! Is there any clearer way he can say “I don’t care about you or your product”? This is a 100% true example of every day life at Wizards.

    There is no better place for the 15 minute a week workers. There’s so many of us I don’t worry about losing my job, even if the managers cared. But they so obviously don’t care that it’s one less thing to worry about.

    Cons

    No upward mobility. But if you're basing your career at this company, you've got bigger problems.

    Advice to Management

    Keep up the good work! Not being recognized by any manager will keep me collecting paychecks from you!


  6. Helpful (4)

    "A Great Company To Work For But Advancement Challenging"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Great work environment, competitive salary, has very nice perks

    Cons

    Very hard to advance from one position to the next. Once you are in a particular role, you may need to leave the company to try new opportunities.

    Advice to Management

    Making job shadowing a supported program would help. I don't mean recognize that it is possible but to create baselines for it and track it across the enterprise.


  7. Helpful (1)

    "Outstanding place to work."

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Great atmosphere and coworkers. Collaborative environment.

    Cons

    IT support a little lacking.

    Advice to Management

    Invest in technology.

  8. Helpful (1)

    "Incredibly Supportive Company"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Wizards of the Coast full-time

    Pros

    I started as a contractor. After putting in a few months of work I was converted to full-time and couldn't be happier. I've been presented with so many incredible opportunities for growth, and have found that the hard work I put into my job is absolutely rewarded. Wizards is the kind of place that likes to keep its employees around, and the job security is unlike anywhere else in the industry. My coworkers are insanely smart, fun, friendly, and supportive of my endeavors and ideas. Compensation, at least in my department, is -excellent-. I feel very well-taken-care-of.

    Cons

    Sometimes my job requires I work weekends, but the ample vacation time balances that out. Cooperation with other departments sometimes can be tricky.

    Advice to Management

    A lot of change has been made in the past year -- keep focusing efforts on improving the problems that are there and rewarding success when you see it. Other than that, keep up the good work! This is far and away the best employer I've ever had.


  9. Helpful (3)

    "Lot's green grass here"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager in Tacoma, WA
    Current Employee - Manager in Tacoma, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Wizards of the Coast full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Vacation, Wizards Week (employee appreciation the week of Halloween), closed the last week of the year, 401k match, bonus, games and gaming focus at work, great people to work with, work/life balance is the best I've seen.

    Cons

    Career paths are not defined. Some careers appear to dead end so moving job roles may be only option at advancement. Annual reviews can be unfair due to grading on a curve (e.g. if somebody gets a high score then someone needs to get a low score). These things are fixable.

    Advice to Management

    Fix the career paths. Match job functions and responsibilities to industry accepted titles instead of bucketing into generic roles. Outside recruiters see through that and your internal employees lose out on their sense of pride. Encourage innovation company wide. Hold a competition for innovative ideas from any department.


  10. Helpful (1)

    "Definite Progress!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Associate Manager in Renton, WA
    Current Employee - Associate Manager in Renton, WA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Wizards of the Coast full-time

    Pros

    Work-life balance is incredible. The people here are welcoming and intelligent and creative. I feel that I have plenty of opportunities to advance, and I feel that any ideas I have will be heard. I feel comfortable speaking to bosses all the way up to the CEO, who is friendly and makes an effort to talk to employees. To note: my experience has been in the Marketing department, so I am not sure what other departments experience.

    Cons

    There have been times especially when I first started that departments were very separate and that made it difficult to get all the information I needed in order to do my job. However, there has been leaps and bounds made in organizational changes and processes that has really begun to alleviate this problem.

    Advice to Management

    Keep going in the direction you are. The changes that are being made are positive and I appreciate a self-aware company that is willing to change and ask employee's opinions on what kind of environment makes them most successful.


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